Israeli Lunar Lander Crashes on Moon Surface

Israeli Lunar Lander Crashes on Moon Surface

Israeli Lunar Lander Crashes on Moon Surface

But Doron Opher, general manager of the space division of Israel Aerospace Industries, said the craft "definitely crashed on the surface of the moon".

The small robotic spacecraft, built by the non-profit SpaceIL and state-owned Israel Aerospace Industries, had hoped to match a feat that has only been achieved by the national space agencies of three countries: U.S., Russian Federation and China. "We need to praise what we accomplished".

In late 2017 SpaceIL requested $30 million to finish the lander, and several donors came through, which ensured that the spacecraft could eventually fly, even as Google withdrew its sponsorship of the Lunar X-Prize in early 2018, stating no team could make the final deadline of March 31, 2018.

Almost two months after its launch with a SpaceX rocket, the first private mission ever to try landing on the Moon has ended in failure. "We have also made Israel the seventh country ever to orbit the moon and, hopefully by tonight, the fourth country to actually land on the moon". SpaceIL's launch contract with SpaceX and Spaceflight Industries was finalized and the mission was slotted to fly along with the Indonesian Nusantara Satu and USAF AFRL S5 satellites on a Falcon 9 Block 5.

"Beresheet crashed on the surface of the Moon after the main engine broke down", Eylon Levy, a journalist for i24News, tweeted after the failure.

Beresheet was created to take measurements of the Moon's magnetic field there using an instrument supplied by the University of California, Los Angeles. Beresheet then lowered its lunar orbit via a series of burns, the last of which occurred yesterday (April 10).

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The unmanned robotic lander had a number of technical problems during its final descent to the lunar surface, the mission's crew said.

The landing was expected to be somewhere inside the moon's Mare Serenitatis, or Sea of Serenity. Netanyahu wants a whole Israeli spaceship on the moon within 2 years. The craft also toted a small laser retroreflector array built by NASA, a technology demonstration that could increase the precision of future touchdowns on the moon and other celestial bodies.

Kahn told Business Insider before Beresheet's launch that there was "no guarantee" the mission would succeed. He said scientists are trying to determine what caused the engine failure, dooming the spacecraft to travel too quickly to land safely.

And the lander has certainly done all of that.

As we reported back in February, Israel had sent a lunar lander up with a SpaceX launch with the intention of landing on the moon.

And project team members have met with more than 1 million Israeli schoolkids over the past eight years, taking the space-exploration message to the young masses.

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